Tourism Demand among International Students: Implications on Penang Tourism Industry

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Date: Oct. 15, 2017
Publisher: Global Business and Management Research: An International Journal
Document Type: Article
Length: 5,409 words
Lexile Measure: 1360L

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Abstract :

Purpose: This study investigates the determinants of tourism demand among international students in a public university located in the Malaysian state of Penang. The university is located in the tourism enclave of Penang making it an ideal choice for travel seekers. Several factors were included in this study covering demographic characteristics of the students, the destination image of Penang, the quality of accommodation as well as the quality of food. Design/methodology/approach: A close-ended questionnaire was distributed to postgraduate students in the public university both by hand and via eklectronicaly using Google Form. Of the 320 questionnaires distributed, 116 were found to be valid for analysis after rejecting incomplete forms and forms with irrelevant information. Structural equation modelling and analysis of variance estimations were used in this study. Findings: The study found that age, gender, household income and nationality have no statistically significant infuence on tourism demand. Duration of study provided some evidence of statistical influence on tourism demand whereby the longer a student stayed in a programme, the higher the chances of embarking on tourist activities. It was also found that both quality of accommodation and quality of food have a positive influence on the demand for tourism among these international students. Research limitations/implications: The sample size of only 116 respondents is rather low especially when structural equation modelling is applied. The sample is also only the international students studying in a public university in Penang. With the number of public universities in Malaysia, the results of this study cannot be representative. The financial status, nature and culture of many of these students could be very different from students who are studying in a private university. Practical implications: Bring awareness to the importance of educational tourism to the country's economy. Provide deeper understanding to relevant parties such as tour operators, hoteliers, transportation providers on the need for enhanced service to attract more tourists. Suggestions to improve tourism related services; volunteer tour guides, river cruises, better transportation and all-in-one tourist counter in educational institutions. Originality/value: Provide researchers a better insight and understanding of academic tourism. Serve as the basic foundation for academics or researchers who are interested in conducting in-depth studies on international students as tourists. Keywords: Educational Tourism, International Students, Penang, Structural equation modelling (SEM)

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A562370692